ittle Simz began her North American 'Grey Area' Tour at Chicago's Lincoln Hall and the 25-year-old rapper from London spilled her heart out in an epic performance that unleashed all the energy stored in her new album. The night began with an opening set from April + Vista that elevated the crowd with incredible vocal solos and enticing bass lines. After a 30-minute set, the stage crew began setting up all the instruments for Little Simz' live band.

According to recent album reviews, live instrumentation is a new toy for Little Simz and I was excited to see how she played with it. Little Simz' band stepped out from behind the curtain dressed in all-white and the crowd screamed until she appeared. Little Simz approached the crowd with a fiery energy and began her set with a rendition of 'Therapy'. The integration of a real drum-kit, piano, and back-up vocals allowed Little Simz to flex her vocals and deliver her rhymes powerfully, without restraint.

Little Simz spilled her heart out to the crowd in the sense that she told her story. She sang a tribute to her next-door neighbor that had to deal with all of her 2AM bedroom sessions before she blew up, she talked about North London, and she expressed a genuine appreciation to all those that listen to her music.

Every track revealed another aspect of her story through the visceral imagery of her lyrics but she also played guitar and bass solos to express herself even further. Little Simz eventually walked out into the crowd to perform 'Venom' and everyone went wild to say the least.

Little Simz' North American 'Grey Area' Tour continues throughout the month of June which will include shows at Bonnaroo, Firefly Festival and Electric Forest.

Photos by
Pedro Acosta